This is the Presidency George Wallace Never HadRoundup
tags: conservatism, racism, George Wallace
Max Boot, a Post columnist, is the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick senior fellow for national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a global affairs analyst for CNN. He is the author of The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam, a finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in biography.
We know how a normal president responds when a white police officer ignites furious protests by killing a black man. It is the way President Barack Obama responded in 2014 after a grand jury refused to indict a white police officer who had fatally shot Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and the National Guard had to be called in to deal with looting and fires.
Obama expressed sympathy for the protesters — their anger, he noted, was “rooted in realities that have existed in this country for a long time” — while making clear that he had no sympathy with violence: “Burning buildings, torching cars, destroying property, putting people at risk — that’s destructive and there’s no excuse for it. Those are criminal acts. And people should be prosecuted if they engage in criminal acts.”
Note that Obama called for anyone who broke the law to be “prosecuted.” Now compare with the way President Trump has responded to the civil disorder in Minneapolis following the unjustified killing of a black man named George Floyd by a white police officer.
The president had initially and properly mourned Floyd’s “very sad and tragic death,” but in the early morning hours of Friday, he struck an incendiary tone. Trump castigated the “very weak Radical Left Mayor” of Minneapolis and threatened to “send in the National Guard & get the job done right.” His chilling bottom line: “Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”
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